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  1. Death does not harm the one who dies because there is no one to harm.David E. Rowe - manuscript
    If death is a harm then it is a harm that cannot be experienced. The proponent of death's harm must therefore provide an answer to Epicurus, when he says that ‘death, is nothing to us, since when we are, death is not present, and when death is present, then we are not’. In this paper I respond to the two main ways philosophers have attempted to answer Epicurus, regarding the subject of death's harm: either directly or via analogy. The direct (...)
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  2. كتاب الفلاسفة الموتى.Salah Osman - manuscript
    لا شك أن حقيقة موتنا هي أهم حقيقة عنا، على حد تعبير الفيلسوف الأمريكي «تود جيفورد ماي»؛ قد يكون الموت مأساويًا وتعسفيًا ولا معنى له للوهلة الأولى، لكنه في الوقت ذاته يفتح أمامنا الحياة الكاملة التي لم تكن لتوجد بدونه! فكيف يمكن أن نعيش في مواجهة النفي التام؟ كيف يجب أن نفكر في الموت؟ وهل يجب على الأطباء، الذين يُتهمون أحيانًا بأنهم دجالون يبيعون وهم الخلود، أن ينتبهوا أكثر لفلسفة الموت؟.
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  3. Annihilation Isn't Bad For You.Travis Timmerman - manuscript
    In The Human Predicament, David Benatar develops and defends the annihilation view, according to which “death is bad in large part because it annihilates the being who dies.” In this paper, I make both a positive and negative argument against the annihilation view. My positive argument consists in showing that the annihilation view generates implausible consequences in cases where one can incur some other (intrinsic) bad to avoid the supposed (intrinsic) bad of annihilation. More precisely, Benatar’s view entails that would (...)
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  4. Fighting Aging as an Effective Altruism Cause: A Model of the Impact of the Clinical Trials of Simple Interventions.Alexey Turchin - manuscript
    The effective altruism movement aims to save lives in the most cost-effective ways. In the future, technology will allow radical life extension, and anyone who survives until that time will gain potentially indefinite life extension. Fighting aging now increases the number of people who will survive until radical life extension becomes possible. We suggest a simple model, where radical life extension is achieved in 2100, the human population is 10 billion, and life expectancy is increased by simple geroprotectors like metformin (...)
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  5. Capital Punishment (or: Why Death is the 'Ultimate' Punishment).Michael Cholbi - forthcoming - In Jesper Ryberg (ed.), Oxford Handbook of the Philosophy of Punishment.
    Both proponents and opponents of capital punishment largely agree that death is the most severe punishment that societies should consider imposing on offenders. This chapter considers how (if at all) this ‘Ultimate Thesis’ can be vindicated. Appeals to the irrevocability of death, the badness of being executed, the badness of death, or the harsh condemnation societies express by sentencing offenders to death do not succeed in vindicating this Thesis, and in particular, fail to show that capital punishment is more severe (...)
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  6. Two Kinds of Arguments Against the Fittingness of Fearing Death.Ning Fan - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry:1-15.
    Epicurus famously argued that death cannot be bad for a person because only painful experiences or something that brings about them can be bad for people, but when a person dies, she cannot experience anything at all, let alone pain. If, as Epicurus argued, death is not something bad for us, then presumably, we have no reason to fear it. In contrast with Epicurus, however, contemporary philosophers of death generally subscribe to the deprivation account of the badness of death, which (...)
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  7. Reconciling the deprivation account with the final badness of death.Andrés G. Garcia & Berit Braun - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry:1-14.
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  8. The Role of Hospice and Palliative Medicine in the Ars Moriendi.Durham Levi - forthcoming - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy.
    There is disagreement among physicians and medical ethicists on the precise goals of Hospice and Palliative Medicine (HPM). Some think that HPM's goals should differ from those of other branches of medicine and aim primarily at lessening pain, discomfort, and confusion; while others think that HPM's practices should, like all other branches of medicine, aim at promoting health. I take the latter position: using the ars moriendi to set a standard for what it means to die well, I argue that (...)
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  9. The Premature Death of Path Dependence.David M. Levy - forthcoming - Complexity.
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  10. Achieving Tranquility: Epicurus on Living without Fear.Tim O'Keefe - forthcoming - In Nathan Powers & Jacob Klein (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Hellenistic Philosophy.
    Explores the role of eliminating fear in Epicurean ethics and physics, focusing on techniques to eliminate the fear of death and the fear of the gods.
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  11. The Badness of Death for Sociable Cattle.Daniel Story - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry:1-20.
    I argue that death can be (and sometimes is) bad for cattle because it destroys relationships that are valuable for cattle for their own sake. The argument relies on an analogy between valuable human relationships and relationships cattle form with conspecifics. I suggest that the reasons we have for thinking that certain rich and meaningful human relationships are valuable for their own sake should also lead us to think that certain cattle relationships are valuable for their own sake. And just (...)
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  12. Correction to: The Badness of Death for Sociable Cattle.Daniel Story - forthcoming - Journal of Value Inquiry:1-2.
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  13. The ethics of exaggerated harm.Mary Ann Sushinsky, David Mertz & Udo Schüklenk - forthcoming - Bioethics.
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  14. O Mal da Morte No Pessimismo: Considerações a Partir de Arthur Schopenhauer e David Benatar.Felipe Dossena - 2024 - Kínesis - Revista de Estudos Dos Pós-Graduandos Em Filosofia 15 (39):152-166.
    Neste trabalho, investigo a possibilidade de compatibilidade entre o pessimismo filosófico e a compreensão da morte como um mal para quem morre. Por pessimismo filosófico, compreendo a doutrina filosófica que mantém como tese fundamental que a não-existência é preferível à existência, de modo que o pessimismo é tomado como a filosofia de que a vida não vale a pena ser vivida. Por mal da morte, me refiro à compreensão da morte como um dano para o indivíduo que morre, cujo pressuposto (...)
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  15. What Makes Life Meaningful? A Debate.Thaddeus Metz & Joshua Seachris - 2024 - Routledge.
    What does talk about life’s meaning even mean? Can human life be meaningful? What is God’s role, if any, in a meaningful life? These three questions frame this one-of-a-kind debate between two philosophers who have spent most of their professional lives thinking and writing about the topic of life’s meaning. In this wide-ranging scholarly conversation, Professors Thaddeus Metz and Joshua Seachris develop and defend their own unique answers to these questions, while responding to each other’s objections in a lively dialogue (...)
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  16. Depressing Goings-on in the House of Actuality: Philosophers and Poets Confront Larkin's 'Aubade'.Kathy Behrendt - 2023 - Partial Answers: Journal of Literature and History of Ideas 21 (1):133-151.
    Philip Larkin’s poem “Aubade” tackles the subject of mortality with technical facility and unsparing candour. It has a reputation for profoundly affecting its readers. Yet poets Seamus Heaney and Czeslaw Milosz think “Aubade” is bad for us and for poetry: it lures us into the underworld and traps us there, and betrays poetry’s purpose by transcribing rather than transforming the depressing facts of reality. Philosophers, however, quite like it. “Aubade” crops up repeatedly in contemporary philosophy of death. I examine the (...)
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  17. Rationally Facing Death: Fear and Other Alternatives.Michael Cholbi - 2023 - Philosophy Compass 18 (6):e12931.
    Explaining what emotions or attitudes it is rational for humans to have toward our own deaths and toward their mortality has been a central task within most philosophical traditions. This article critically examines the rationality of five emotions or attitudes that might be taken toward death: fear, insofar as death can harm us by reducing our overall level of well-being; the related attitude of existential terror, a feeling of dismay or uncanniness directed at the prospect of our eventual non-existence; regret, (...)
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  18. Freedom, Responsibility, and Value: Essays in Honor of John Martin Fischer.Taylor W. Cyr, Andrew Law & Neal A. Tognazzini (eds.) - 2023 - New York: Routledge.
    This volume celebrates the career of John Martin Fischer, whose work on a wide range of topics over the past forty years has been transformative and inspirational. Fischer's semicompatibilist view of free will and moral responsibility is perhaps the most widely discussed view of its kind, and his emphasis on the significance of reasons-responsiveness as the capacity that underlies moral accountability has been widely influential. Aside from free will and moral responsibility, Fischer is also well-known for his work on freedom (...)
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  19. Allocation of Scarce Life-Saving Medical Resources: Why Does Age Matter?Felipe Dossena & Milene Tonetto - 2023 - Ethic@ - An International Journal for Moral Philosophy 22 (3):1111-1128.
    In this paper, we address the moral justification problem concerning the use of age as a criterion for the allocation of scarce life-saving medical resources. We present and discuss four justifications that stand out in philosophical literature: efficiency, sufficiency, egalitarian, and prioritarian. We aim to demonstrate that all these justifications are unsatisfactory since they entail counterintuitive implications in cases involving fetuses and newborns. We then suggest another justification for the relevance of age based on the Time-Relative Interest Account of the (...)
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  20. Ethics and Time in the Philosophy of History: A Cross-Cultural Approach.Natan Elgabsi & Bennett Gilbert (eds.) - 2023 - London: Bloomsbury.
    This interdisciplinary volume connects the philosophy of history to moral philosophy with a unique focus on time. Taking in a range of intellectual traditions, cultural, and geographical contexts, the volume provides a rich tapestry of approaches to time, morality, culture, and history. -/- By extending the philosophical discussion on the ethical importance of temporality, the editors disentangle some of the disciplinary tensions between analytical and hermeneutic philosophy of history, cultural theory, meta-ethical theory, and normative ethics. The ethical and existential character (...)
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  21. Contemporary Anti-Natalism.Thaddeus Metz (ed.) - 2023 - Routledge.
    Given the pain, discomfort, anxiety, heartbreak, and boredom that most humans experience in their lives, is it morally permissible to create them? Some philosophers lately have answered ‘No’, contending that it is wrong to create a new human life when one could avoid doing so, because it would be bad for the one created. This view is known as ‘anti-natalism’. Some contributors to this volume argue that anti-natalism is true because: agents have a prima facie duty to prevent suffering; it (...)
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  22. Review: Kamm, almost over: Aging, Dying, Death. [REVIEW]Michael Cholbi - 2022 - Criminal Law and Philosophy 17 (1):223-228.
  23. The Rationality of Suicide and the Meaningfulness of Life.Michael Cholbi - 2022 - In Iddo Landau (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Meaning in Life. Oxford University Press. pp. 445-460.
    A wide body of psychological research corroborates the claim that whether one’s life is (or will be) meaningful appears relevant to whether it is rational to continue living. This article advances conceptions of life’s meaningfulness and of suicidal choice with an eye to ascertaining how the former might provide justificatory reasons relevant to the latter. Drawing upon the recent theory of meaningfulness defended by Cheshire Calhoun, the decision to engage in suicide can be understood as a choice related to life’s (...)
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  24. Permanent Value.Christopher Frugé - 2022 - Journal of the American Philosophical Association 8 (2):356-372.
    Temporal nihilism is the view that our lives won’t matter after we die. According to the standard interpretation, this is because our lives won’t make a permanent difference. Many who consider the view thus reject it by denying that our lives need to have an eternal impact. However, in this paper, I develop a different formulation of temporal nihilism revolving around the persistence of personal value itself. According to this stronger version, we do not have personal value after death, so (...)
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  25. Value After Death.Christopher Frugé - 2022 - Ratio 35 (3):194-203.
    Does our life have value for us after we die? Despite the importance of such a question, many would find it absurd, even incoherent. Once we are dead, the thought goes, we are no longer around to have any wellbeing at all. However, in this paper I argue that this common thought is mistaken. In order to make sense of some of our most central normative thoughts and practices, we must hold that a person can have wellbeing after they die. (...)
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  26. Does the Lack of Cosmic Meaning Make Our Lives Bad?Thaddeus Metz - 2022 - Journal of Value Inquiry 56 (1):37-50.
    This article is part of a special issue devoted to David Benatar’s anti-natalism. There are places in his oeuvre where he contends that, while our lives might be able to exhibit some terrestrial or human meaning, that is not enough to make them worth creating, which would require a cosmic meaning that is unavailable to us. There are those who maintain, in reply to Benatar, that some of our lives do have a cosmic meaning, but I argue that Benatar is (...)
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  27. Counterfactuals, indeterminacy, and value: a puzzle.Eli Pitcovski & Andrew Peet - 2022 - Synthese 200 (1):1-20.
    According to the Counterfactual Comparative Account of harm and benefit, an event is overall harmful for a subject to the extent that this subject would have been better off if it had not occurred. In this paper we present a challenge for the Counterfactual Comparative Account. We argue that if physical processes are chancy in the manner suggested by our best physical theories, then CCA faces a dilemma: If it is developed in line with the standard approach to counterfactuals, then (...)
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  28. Death and Decline.Aaron Thieme - 2022 - Philosophical Quarterly 73 (1):248-257.
    In this paper, I investigate backward-looking accounts of death's badness. I begin by reviewing deprivationism—the standard, forward-looking account of death's badness. On deprivationism, death is bad for its victims when it deprives them of a good future. This account famously faces two problems—Lucretius’s symmetry problem and the preemption problem. This motivates turning to backward-looking accounts of death's badness on which death is bad for its victim (in a respect) when it involves a decline from a good life. I distinguish three (...)
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  29. Constraint-Free Meaning, Fearing Death, and Temporal Bias.Travis Timmerman - 2022 - The Journal of Ethics 26 (3):377-393.
    This paper focuses on three distinct issues in Fischer’s Death, Immortality, and Meaning in Life, viz. meaning in life, fearing death, and asymmetrical attitudes between our prenatal and postmortem non-existence. I first raise the possibility that life’s total meaning can be negative and argue that immoral or harmful acts are plausibly meaning-detracting acts, which could make the lives of historically impactful evil dictators anti-meaningful. After that, I review Fischer’s two necessary conditions for meaning in life and argue against each. In (...)
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  30. Dissolving Death’s Time-of-Harm Problem.Travis Timmerman - 2022 - Australasian Journal of Philosophy 100 (2):405-418.
    Most philosophers in the death literature believe that death can be bad for the person who dies. The most popular view of death’s badness—namely, deprivationism—holds that death is bad for the person who dies because, and to the extent that, it deprives them of the net good that they would have accrued, had their actual death not occurred. Deprivationists thus face the challenge of locating the time that death is bad for a person. This is known as the Timing Problem, (...)
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  31. The Temporal Bias Approach to the Symmetry Problem and Historical Closeness.Huiyuhl Yi - 2022 - Philosophia 51 (3):1763-1781.
    In addressing the Lucretian symmetry problem, the temporal bias approach claims that death is bad because it deprives us of something about which it is rational to care (e.g., future pleasures), whereas prenatal nonexistence is not bad because it only deprives us of something about which it is rational to remain indifferent (e.g., past pleasures). In a recent contribution to the debate on this approach, Miguel and Santos argue that a late beginning can deprive us of a future pleasure. Their (...)
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  32. Lucretian Symmetry and the Content-Based Approach.Huiyuhl Yi - 2022 - Philosophia 50 (2):815-831.
    In addressing the Lucretian symmetry problem, the content-based approach attends to the difference between the contents of the actual life and those of relevant possible lives of a person. According to this approach, the contents of a life with an earlier beginning would substantially differ from, and thus be discontinuous with, the contents of the actual life, whereas the contents of a life with the same beginning but a later death would be continuous with the contents of the actual life. (...)
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  33. Death in Mind: Life, Meaning and Mortality.Kathy Behrendt - 2021 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. New York, NY: Routledge. pp. 245-252.
    Does thinking about our death help or hinder us? I will approach this question by looking at which portions of a life can bear meaning, i.e. whether meaning is local (something that attaches to parts of a life taken in isolation from one another) or global (resulting from the combination of, or interrelations among, events in life as a whole). I present two versions of the “part life” view of meaning and two versions of the “whole life” view. I show (...)
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  34. Four-dimensionalism, eternalism, and deprivationist accounts of the evil of death.Andrew Brenner - 2021 - Synthese 199 (5-6):13643-13660.
    Four-dimensionalists think that we persist over time by having different temporal parts at each of the times at which we exist. Eternalists think that all times are equally real. Deprivationists think that death is an evil for the one who dies because it deprives them of something. I argue that four-dimensionalist eternalism, conjoined with a standard deprivationist account of the evil of death, has surprising implications for what we should think about the evil of death. In particular, given these assumptions, (...)
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  35. Death, Deprivation and the Afterlife.Anna Brinkerhoff - 2021 - Philosophia 50 (1):19-34.
    Most people believe that death is bad for the one who dies. Much attention has been paid to the Epicurean puzzle about death that the rests on a tension between that belief and another—that death is the end of one’s existence. But there is nearby puzzle about death that philosophers have largely left untouched. This puzzle rests on a tension between the belief that death is bad for the one who dies and the belief that that death is not the (...)
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  36. Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives.Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.) - 2021 - New York, NY: Routledge.
    Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classical and Contemporary Perspectives is the first book to offer students the full breadth of philosophical issues that are raised by the end of life. Included are many of the essential voices that have contributed to the philosophy of death and dying throughout history and in contemporary research. The 38 chapters in its nine sections contain classic texts and new short argumentative essays, specially commission for this volume by world-leading contemporary experts. Exploring the (...)
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  37. Prenatal and Posthumous Nonexistence: Lucretius on the Harmlessness of Death.Taylor Cyr - 2021 - In Erin Dolgoy, Kimberly Hurd Hale & Bruce Peabody (eds.), Political Theory on Death and Dying. Routledge. pp. 111-120..
    One of the most fascinating and continually debated arguments in the philosophical literature on the badness of death comes from the work of Lucretius (Titus Lucretius Carus, circa 99-55 BCE). This chapter will focus on Lucretius’s famous Symmetry Argument. I will begin by saying more about what exactly Epicureanism teaches about death — and why Epicureans thought it could not be bad. After that, I will provide the passage from Lucretius’s epic poem that includes his reasons for thinking that death (...)
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  38. Taking Stock of the Risks of Life Without Death.August Gorman - 2021 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. New York, NY: Routledge.
    In this chapter I argue that choosing to live forever comes with the threat of an especially pernicious kind of boredom. However, it may be theoretically possible to circumvent it by finding ways to pursue an infinite number of projects consistent with one’s personality, taking on endlessly pursuable endlessly interesting projects, or by rekindling old projects once you’ve forgotten about them. However, each of these possibilities is contingent upon having certain traits that you are likely not currently in a good (...)
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  39. Living Your Best Life.August Gorman - 2021 - Analysis 81 (3):568-576.
    In Almost Over: Aging, Dying, Dead, Frances Kamm seeks to make sense of people’s widely variant choices about which lives they would choose to continue living. She does this by defending the Prudential Prerogative, which, in analogy to the Moral Prerogative, holds that in a fairly wide range of conditions we are under no intrapersonal rational obligation to choose either to die or to live on. I argue against Kamm's case for the Prudential Prerogative in favor of Life Holism, the (...)
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  40. "Life" and "Death". An Inquiry into Essential Meaning of These Phenomena.Andrii Leonov - 2021 - Actual Problems of Mind. Philosophy Journal 22 (22):108-136.
    In this paper, I am dealing with the phenomena of “life” and “death.” The questions that I attempt to answer are “What is life, and what is death?” “Is it bad to die?” and “Is there life after death?” The method that I am using in this paper is that of phenomenology. The latter I understand as an inquiry into meaning, that is, what makes this or that phenomenon as such. Thus, I am approaching the phenomena in question from the (...)
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  41. Meaning in Life in Spite of Death.Thaddeus Metz - 2021 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. New York, NY: Routledge. pp. 253-261.
    In this chapter the author critically explores answers to the question of how immortality would affect the meaningfulness of a person’s life, understood roughly as a life that merits esteem, achieves purposes much more valuable than pleasure, or makes for a good life-story. The author expounds three arguments for thinking that life would be meaningless if it were mortal, and provides objections to them. He then offers a reason for thinking that a mortal life could be meaningful, and responds to (...)
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  42. Comparing the Meaningfulness of Finite and Infinite Lives: Can We Reap What We Sow if We Are Immortal?Thaddeus Metz - 2021 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 90:105-123.
    On the rise over the past 20 years has been ‘moderate supernaturalism’, the view that while a meaningful life is possible in a world without God or a soul, a much greater meaning would be possible only in a world with them. William Lane Craig can be read as providing an important argument for a version of this view, according to which only with God and a soul could our lives have an eternal, as opposed to temporally limited, significance, by (...)
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  43. Getting All Emotional about the Fear of Death.Adam Patterson - 2021 - In T. Ryan Byerly (ed.), Death, Immortality, and Eternal Life. Routledge.
    In the contemporary fear of death literature, few if any discuss what implications insights from the philosophical literature on emotions might have for arguments about the fear of death’s rationality. I remedy that here. I discuss two types of arguments to conclusions about the fear of death’s rationality. One type is Badness Arguments. The other is Epicurean Arguments. Both argument types have contradictory conclusions. Both employ different conditional claims as their crucial premise. And both presuppose that there is some relation (...)
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  44. Death Does Not Harm the One Who Dies Because There is No One to Harm.David Emmanuel Rowe - 2021 - Southwest Philosophy Review 37 (2):83-106.
    If death is a harm then it is a harm that cannot be experienced. The proponent of death’s harm must therefore provide an answer to Epicurus, when he says that ‘death, is nothing to us, since when we are, death is not present, and when death is present, then we are not’. In this paper I respond to the two main ways philosophers have attempted to answer Epicurus, regarding the subject of death’s harm: either directly or via analogy. The direct (...)
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  45. Death's Shadow Lightened.Daniel Rubio - 2021 - In Sara Bernstein & Tyron Goldschmidt (eds.), Non-being: New Essays on the Metaphysics of Non-existence. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. pp. 310-328.
    Epicurus (in)famously argued that death is not harmful and therefore our standard reactions to it (like deep fear of death and going to great lengths to postpone it) are not rational, inaugurating an ongoing debate about the harm of death. Those who wish to resist this conclusion must identify the harm of death. But not any old harm will do. In order to resist both the claim that death is not harmful and the claim that our standard reactions to it (...)
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  46. Can We Measure the Badness of Death for the Person who Dies?Thomas Schramme - 2021 - Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 90:253-276.
    I aim to show that the common idea according to which we can assess how bad death is for the person who dies relies on numerous dubious premises. These premises are intuitive from the point of view of dominant views regarding the badness of death. However, unless these premises have been thoroughly justified, we cannot measure the badness of death for the person who dies. In this paper, I will make explicit assumptions that pertain to the alleged level of badness (...)
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  47. How Much Does Slaughter Harm Humanely Raised Animals?Coleman Solis - 2021 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 38 (2):258-272.
    Some believe that it is immoral to harm animals, but it is not immoral to kill humanely raised domesticated animals. Implicit in this is the assumption that it is possible to raise and slaughter animals without harming them significantly. In recent years, a number of philosophers – DeGrazia, Harman, Bradley, and others – have claimed that slaughter harms an animal in proportion to the amount of valuable future life that an animal loses in dying, which seems to challenge this assumption. (...)
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  48. If You Want to Die Later, Then Why Don't You Want to Have Been Born Earlier?Travis Timmerman - 2021 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. New York, NY: Routledge.
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  49. An Irrational Suicide?Jukka Varelius - 2021 - In Michael Cholbi & Travis Timmerman (eds.), Exploring the Philosophy of Death and Dying: Classic and Contemporary Perspectives. New York, NY: Routledge.
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  50. The Routledge Handbook of Hellenistic Philosophy.Kelly Arenson (ed.) - 2020 - Routledge.
    Hellenistic philosophy concerns the thought of the Epicureans, Stoics, and Skeptics, the most influential philosophical groups in the era between the death of Alexander the Great and the defeat of the last Greek stronghold in the ancient world. The Routledge Handbook of Hellenistic Philosophy provides accessible yet rigorous introductions to the theories of knowledge, ethics, and physics belonging to each of the three schools. It explores the fascinating ways in which interschool rivalries shaped the philosophies of the era, and offers (...)
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